Pellegrini apology for slating referee after City defeat

Manchester City host Barcelona tomorrow in the first leg of their Champions League last-16 tie at the Etihad Stadium.

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Pellegrini apologises for comments about Swedish Ref

Pellegrini apologises for his comments after 2-0 defeat against Barcelona in The Champions League.

Pellegrini, speaking at a press conference to preview this weekend's Barclays Premier League game with Stoke, addressed each of his complaints.

Attempting to clarify his remarks about Eriksson's impartiality, Pellegrini said: "I felt from the beginning his criteria was not the same for both teams.

"I think he had a bad day - everyone can have a bad day - but I didn't say that intentionally he didn't give fouls for us or did give fouls for Barcelona.

"I said from the beginning it was not the same criteria. I repeat, a bad day, not dishonest."

With regard to Eriksson hailing from Sweden, where the league is not considered as competitive as in some of Europe's leading football nations, Pellegrini admitted he made a mistake.

He said: "To say because he was always refereeing in the Swedish league, and that maybe it was better for so important a game to have another kind of referee - it is another thing I didn't think.

"It is not an offence to Sweden or the Swedish people or referees.

"Sweden is a country that has a lot of good players, they have one of the best in the world in Zlatan Ibrahimovic and it can also have a good referee.

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Pellegrini apologises for comments after Barca loss

Pellegrini accused the Swedish referee of being partial to Barcelona. Credit: PA

UEFA, the European governing body, has launched an investigation into Pellegrini's comments and will determine in due course whether disciplinary proceedings should follow.

Pellegrini, speaking at a press conference to preview this weekend's Barclays Premier League game with Stoke, addressed each of his complaints.

Attempting to clarify his remarks about Eriksson's impartiality, Pellegrini said: "I felt from the beginning his criteria was not the same for both teams.

"I think he had a bad day - everyone can have a bad day - but I didn't say that intentionally he didn't give fouls for us or did give fouls for Barcelona.

"I said from the beginning it was not the same criteria. I repeat, a bad day, not dishonest."

With regard to Eriksson hailing from Sweden, where the league is not considered as competitive as in some of Europe's leading football nations, Pellegrini admitted he made a mistake.

He said: "To say because he was always refereeing in the Swedish league, and that maybe it was better for so important a game to have another kind of referee - it is another thing I didn't think.

"It is not an offence to Sweden or the Swedish people or referees.

"Sweden is a country that has a lot of good players, they have one of the best in the world in Zlatan Ibrahimovic and it can also have a good referee.

"I am sure this is a good referee because UEFA is always evaluating all the referees and if he is not a good referee, he is not in the UEFA staff.

"The thing I said in that moment doesn't mean what I think.

"I didn't say any serious accusation about Sweden, just that it was not the most important league in Europe and that is not an offence, I think."

Manuel Pellegrini offers apology for referee coment

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MP: "When you lose a game the way we lost you are frustrated and angry. Maybe I said something I didn't think. I apologise." #mcfc

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MP: "Not an offence to Sweden or Swedish people. I think Sweden has a lot of good players. It also has very good referees." #mcfc

Pellegrini investigated by UEFA over referee comments

Manuel Pellegrini could face disciplinary action from UEFA Credit: PA

Manchester City manager Manuel Pellegrini could face action from UEFA over his comments following their 2-0 Champions League defeat to Barcelona after the European governing body launched an investigation into his remarks.

Pellegrini strongly criticised Swedish referee Jonas Eriksson and appeared to question his impartiality after a match which turned on the decision to award Barca a penalty and send off City defender Martin Demichelis in the 54th minute.

City's Demichelis was sent off for his tackle on Barcelona's Lionel Messi Credit: PA

"UEFA has mandated a disciplinary inspector to commence an investigation concerning the press interviews given by the Manchester City FC head coach Manuel Luis Pellegrini to media after the above-mentioned match," a UEFA statement said.

"Based on the outcome of this investigation, a decision will be taken on whether disciplinary proceedings will be opened."

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Pellegrini confronted referee following City defeat

Pellegrini confronted Swedish referee Jonas Eriksson after the final whistle to express his displeasure following City's 2-0 Champions League defeat. He claimed he was not impartial.

"It was just to tell him that I was not very happy because he decided the game," said the City manager.

Barcelona midfielder Cesc Fabregas was pleased the Spanish giants could "prove a point" to some of their doubters following a dip in form over the last month and he was delighted they could "shut up" their critics.

Chelsea boss Jose Mourinho had called the Catalan side "the worst Barcelona of many years" and former Arsenal star Fabregas told ITV:

"Maybe we had to prove a point in a way and I think we did it and I think we did it in a style and very, very well, but this team has done so much and won so much to always have to prove a point.

"But today was one of those days maybe everyone was saying Barcelona was not the same Barcelona...some people were talking a bit too much and as usual they will have to shut up for a few days.

"We are top of the league, we had a good result and we are in the final of the [Copa del Rey]. There's nothing else you can ask for.

– Cesc Fabregas

Pellegrini: 'Referee not impartial'

Manuel Pellegrini Credit: PA

After losing 2-0 at the Etihad in the Champions League last 16 first leg match Manuel Pellegrini attacked the referee.

The City manager said: "From the beginning I felt the referee was not impartial to both teams so he decided the game with a foul that he didn't whistle against and a penalty with Demichelis that was not a penalty, it was outside the box.

"He did not have any control of the game. He was on the side of Barcelona from the beginning until the end.

"I think it was not a good idea to put a referee from Sweden in charge of such an important match, especially a referee who has made an important mistake against Barcelona in a previous match."

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